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Rod Randall's Big Weed List

Rod Randall, from The Department of Agriculture (Western Australia), has drawn upon many sources to compile a list of plants observed being invasive around the world. This list was previously available elsewhere on the web, but needed to find a new home--we are proud to be able to house it on our site. You can browse the list using the links below. Also, read this important disclaimer regarding lists of species on our web site.

Quick Navigation Links (use plant family abbreviations)
Aca-Asp   Asteraceae   Ath-Cap   Car-Cup   Cya-Eup   Fab-Gen  
Ger-Mar   Mel-Plu   Poaceae   Pol-Sam   San-Zyg    

List download
You can download the entire list as a single file (MS Word doc, 4.3MB file).

Frequently asked questions

Q: What if a plant is/isn't on this list? 
To build this list, Rod extracted data from a large number of sources. These sources have differing criteria for including species, so the data have inherent selection effects and you should not interpret the inclusion of a plant as an iron-clad indictment of its invasive characteristics. However, one of the best predictors of a plant's invasiveness in a specific area is whether it has been observed as being invasive in other areas with similar characteristics. So if a plant is included on this list (and especially if it is listed multiple times), it may be wise to consider the plant to be a potential invader.

On the other hand, if a plant does not appear on his list, it may not be completely safe to assume the plant is not invasive---the plant may simply have slipped through the source lists for temporal, spatial, or other incompleteness reasons.

Q: Are there errors/limitations to the list? 
1)This list is dated November 2003. Weeds adventive after this date are not included in the list.
2)There are occasional spelling errors. While usually not significant, they can foil searches through the database that you might make using exact search strings.
3)Revisions in systematics may make this list inconsistent with other lists. For examples: changes in Martyniaceae/Pedaliaceae, changes to Scrophulariaceae, etc. Entries for a plant such as Menyanthes might be found under both under Gentianaceae and Menyanthaceae.

Q: How do I read the codes in the list? 
The list is ordered by plant family, each plant family section in the list is headed by the family name in bold face. Within each family section, the data format is simple with one record per line, where each line derived from a single source. Each line consists of 13 fields, where each field is separated by a comma. If a field has no information, it is still indicated by the pair of delimiting commas (i.e. ,,). The field definitions are:
  • Fields 1-4 are the plant's genus, species, synonyms, common names.
  • Field 5 is the plant's "Enviro code," and if present may look like a concatenated string of X's, H's, E's, S's, and w's (from Randall, R.P. 2001. Garden thugs, a national list of invasive and potentially invasive garden plants. Plant Protection Quarterly 16 (4), 138-171.)
    X=is a recognised environmental weed, from numerous sources.
    H=is a significant environmental weed, from numerous sources.
    E=is a recognised significant environmental sleeper weed.
    S=is a potential environmental weed with no previous weed history.
    w=is a weed in Australia and elsewhere.
  • Field 6: L indicates the species is legally a Declared/Noxious plant in Australia, while Q indicates the plant is a Northern Australian Quarantine Strategy target species.
  • Field 7: P indicates it is prohibited to import the plant into Western Australia.
  • Field 8: G indicates the species is grown in gardens in Australia.
  • Field 9: N indicates the species is sold in nurseries somewhere in Australia.
  • Field 10: Lists the Australian states in which the species is a Declared/Noxious plant (WA=Western Australia, NT=Northern Territory, Qld=Queensland, NSW=New South Wales, Vic=Victoria, Tas=Tasmania, SA=South Australia).
  • Fields 11-13 provide comments, distribution information, and data source information respectively.
Q: Give me more information! 
For more products related to Rod's big weed lists, refer to the large searchable database online at HEAR. The HEAR web site also contains information about Rod's book, called "A Global Compendium of Weeds."

Photography archive
One of the largest collections of photographs of invasive species (mostly plants) available on the web.
Gallery of pests
A rogue's gallery of many of the invasive pests and pathogens that have invaded North America, or that have the potential to do so.

Other site resources

Weed Information Management System (WIMS)
A fully-integrated hardware and software application for mapping invasives and tracking management actions.
Remote sensing
A review of remote sensing technology, as applied to invasive species detection and mapping.
Red Alerts!
Species which are either new to an area, or are showing alarming symptoms such as signs of signicant, new expansion.
Templates and examples
Adaptive management planning tools such as model plans for sites, weed control templates, etc. Very useful!
Join our listserve to voice your frustrations and trumpet your successes.
Volunteer coordination and public outreach
Powerpoint presentations on invasive species, weed pamphlets, on developing weed management areas, and more.

Updated January 2005
©The Nature Conservancy, 2005